Dealer Experts Praised in New Book

Scott Habegger, former director of portfolio strategy and management for Harley-Davidson Motor Co., published a book on marketing.

Manufacturers should seek customer insights from their dealers. So says Scott Habegger, former director of portfolio strategy and management for Harley-Davidson Motor Co., in his new book, “The Marketing Detective: Discovering the Secrets of Small Data to Fulfill Customer Needs.” Habegger details his 15 “Breakthrough Customer Insights” that enable marketing detectives to uncover customer clues their competitors dismissed, misinterpreted or didn’t see.

Dealers can be a key source for customer insights. “Dealers are the ones directly interacting with customers on a daily basis,” said Habegger, “and they can provide unique insights on their customers.” However, he describes five challenges of getting dealer insights, one of which is knowing if a dealer is providing feedback as a customer or as an expert. “Most motorcycle dealers are also passionate customers of the products they sell. So, it’s critical to clarify if their input is their personal opinion as a customer themselves, or if it’s their expert opinion based on their customers.” 

Habegger makes his points through real-world case studies, many of which come from his 27-year career at Harley. “Dealers will recognize many of the stories and products I write about,” commented Habegger, “most notably the 2014 model year Harley touring bikes featuring Project Rushmore.” He details several examples of how customer insights led the development of the project.

“The Marketing Detective: Discovering the Secrets of Small Data to Fulfill Customer Needs” can be found on Amazon or www.findyourclues.com.

Retiring from Harley in 2019, Habegger founded Trub & Co. Marketing Detective Agency. He is a consultant, speaker and adjunct assistant professor at Milwaukee School of Engineering University.

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